Skip Headers
Oracle® Business Intelligence New Features Guide

Part Number E10416-07
Go to Documentation Home
Go to Book List
Book List
Go to Table of Contents
Go to Feedback page
Contact Us

Go to previous page
Go to next page
View PDF

35 New Features in Oracle BI for Microsoft Office Release

Oracle BI EE Release introduces the following new features for Oracle BI for Microsoft Office:

35.1 Server Independence

Views inserted in Excel and PowerPoint documents by the Oracle BI Add-in for Microsoft Office connected to one server can now be refreshed by connecting the add-in against a different server, if the view definitions are the same.

35.2 Changes to the Add-In

The following changes were made for the Oracle BI Add-in for Microsoft Office:

For more information about these changes, see the add-in's Help system.

35.2.1 Ability to Enable Logging

You can enable logging in the add-in on the Advanced tab of the Preferences dialog. Log messages are written in an HTML format to files in the add-in's installation folder.

35.2.2 Enhanced BI Catalog Task Pane

Chart views in the BI Catalog are identified by a chart type icon that is specific to that chart type. There are icons for bar, area, horizontal bar, line, line-bar combo, pareto, pie, and scatter chart types. These icons help you identify a chart type before inserting it into an Office document.

35.2.3 Ability to Preserve Excel Conditional Formatting During Refreshes

The add-in can preserve any conditional formatting on data that you define using Excel functionality. This requires the add-in to perform cell-level comparisons to preserve the formatting while updating the cell values with updated data, which is performance-intensive. To improve performance, use an option that specifies whether to preserve Excel conditional formatting during refreshes. Select the Preserve Conditional Formatting option in the General tab of the Preferences dialog.

35.2.4 Support for Gauge View

You can add gauge views to PowerPoint and Excel documents. The gauge view is available for insertion from the BI Catalog in the following formats:

  • Image: in Excel and PowerPoint

  • Flash: in PowerPoint only

If you use the Copy to Clipboard feature in Answers and Dashboards and then paste the view in a BI Office document, then the view is inserted as an image.

35.2.5 Support for Funnel View

You can add funnel views to PowerPoint and Excel documents. The funnel view is available for insertion from the BI Catalog as an image in both Excel and PowerPoint.

35.2.6 Edit Prompts and Levels After Insert

When you insert a view in an Excel or PowerPoint document, you can edit or change the levels or prompts for that view. To do so, select the view and click the Edit Prompts and Levels menu item, toolbar button, or ribbon item.

You can edit or change the levels or prompts for the following types of views:

  • Views that you inserted using the BI Catalog task pane inside Excel and PowerPoint.

  • Views that you copied using the Copy Request XML to Clipboard link in Answers and Dashboards and pasted into Excel and PowerPoint documents using the add-in's Paste option.

35.2.7 Enhanced Prompts Selection User Interface

Support for prompts has been enhanced to provide the following prompt properties that are available in Answers:

  • Multi-selection of values

  • Search for prompt values

  • Shuttle UI for selecting multiple values

  • Cascading prompts where the value of one prompt limits the values available in a subsequent prompt (Year = 2008 restricts Quarters to only Q1)

  • Skip prompts

  • Enter ranges of values

35.2.8 Support for Grand Totals in Table Views

You can enter grand totals in table views.

35.3 Support for Combined Request Views

Oracle BI for Microsoft Office supports inserting Answers request views to Excel and PowerPoint that have been constructed using Set operations. Set operations combine results from two or more requests into a single request. The request can be constructed using any of the following Set operations: Union, Union All, Intersect, or Minus. For information on using Set operations to build an Answers request, see the "Combining Oracle BI Request Criteria Using Set Operations" section in Oracle Business Intelligence Answers, Delivers, and Interactive Dashboards User Guide.

Note that if you added a grand total when you created the combined request in Answers, the grand total is not displayed when the view is inserted to Excel. Subtotals are displayed.

35.4 Transparent Compression of Results

New settings have been added in the BI Office Server configuration file that enable an administrator to specify whether compression of results should take place before they are transmitted to the add-in, and to specify the minimum size of the result set beyond which the results should be compressed. The add-in detects this result set as compressed and decompresses the result, transparently to and without any intervention on the part of the user.

35.5 NTLM Support

Oracle BI for Microsoft Office connections that run on supported Windows client operating systems that use Active Directory as the LDAP server for Windows authentication can now connect to Oracle BI EE without requiring the user to enter a user name and password, if Oracle BI EE is configured to authenticate against the same Active Directory server.

NT LAN Manager (NTLM) Authentication Protocol is the name of a family of security protocols in Windows. In Release, Oracle BI for Microsoft Office supports the NTLM protocol to achieve the following features:

To enable NTLM-based or another type of single sign-on, you must make the appropriate changes to the bioffice.xml configuration file. For details on NTLM, refer to the following: